The Five Stages of “Hacked”

[Note: This scale is now posted on its own page here.]

While doing some work around the SolarWinds hacks, I realized that there’s just no simple triage scale that we in the industry can use to simply and succinctly characterize the severity of hacks.

This is my proposal for a simple scale to enable simple but meaningful comparisons of the severity of hacks.

Since the most important thing in hacks is the spread and severity, the cancer staging system gives a good model for measuring these kinds of things so this is adapted from that.

  • Stage 0: The attackers have found or made an entry point to systems or the network but haven’t used it or took no action.
  • Stage I: Attackers have control of a system but haven’t moved beyond the system to the broader network.
  • Stage II: Attackers have moved to the broader network and are in “read-only” mode meaning they can read and steal data but not alter it.
  • Stage III: Attackers have moved to the broader network and have “write” access to the network meaning they can alter data as well as read and steal it.
  • Stage IV: Attackers have administrative control of the broader network meaning they can create accounts and new means of entry to the network as well as alter, read and steal data.

(Also posted on Medium)

14 thoughts on “The Five Stages of “Hacked”

  1. Pingback: How hacked is hacked? Here’s a ‘hack scale’ to better understand the SolarWinds cyberattacks - savvydroid.com

  2. Pingback: How hacked is hacked? Here’s a ‘hack scale’ to better understand the SolarWinds cyberattacks – Non Perele – News Online

  3. Pingback: How hacked is hacked? Here’s a ‘hack scale’ to better understand the SolarWinds cyberattacks | Love Africa News

  4. Pingback: How hacked is hacked? Here’s a ‘hack scale’ to better understand the SolarWinds cyberattacks – Digital Access

  5. Pingback: New Geekwire Article: How hacked is hacked? Here’s a ‘hack scale’ to better understand the SolarWinds cyberattacks | Christopher Budd

  6. Pingback: How hacked is hacked? Here’s a ‘hack scale’ to better understand the SolarWinds cyberattacks – INFRMER

  7. Pingback: How hacked is hacked? Here’s a ‘hack scale’ to better understand the SolarWinds cyberattacks – TECHNOLOGY TRENDS, A DIV. OF OMNI INNOTECH

  8. Pingback: How hacked is hacked? Here’s a ‘hack scale’ to better understand the SolarWinds cyberattacks - GeekWire

  9. Pingback: How hacked is hacked? Here’s a ‘hack scale’ to better understand the SolarWinds cyberattacks – GeekWire – The Data Privacy Channel

  10. Pingback: How hacked is hacked? Here’s a ‘hack scale’ to better understand the SolarWinds cyberattacks – My Phone

  11. Pingback: How hacked is hacked? Here’s a ‘hack scale’ to better understand the SolarWinds cyberattacks – CryptoCoinerDaily

  12. Pingback: How hacked is hacked? Here’s a ‘hack scale’ to better understand the SolarWinds cyberattacks – stips

  13. Pingback: How hacked is hacked? Here’s a ‘hack scale’ to better understand the SolarWinds cyberattacks – Sovi Electronics

  14. Pingback: ہیک کیسے کریں؟ سولر وائنڈ سائبر بٹ کو بہتر طور پر سمجھنے کے لئے یہاں ایک ‘ہیک اسکیل’ ہے - Best Informative Articles

Comments are closed.